"On the instructions of Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, the restriction on SMS to the pre-paid cell phones in the State has been revoked," an official spokesman said on Tuesday.
    
He said the subscribers of pre-paid cell phones had made requests to the Chief Minister in this regard following which he issued instructions to the agencies concerned to lift the said restriction.
    
In June 2010, the state government had imposed a ban on SMS in Jammu and Kashmir following a widespread unrest in the valley. However, six months later the government lifted the ban on all post-paid mobile phone subscribers but refrained from withdrawing it on pre-paid cell phones.

Sources in various service providers confirmed that they have received instructions from the state government to resume SMS on prepaid mobile phones as well with effect from Wednesday.

In response to a Right to Information (RTI) plea, the Centre had clarified that the decision to impose ban on SMS on prepaid cell phones in Jammu and Kashmir was taken by the state government.

Intelligence agencies said in 2010 that prepaid mobile phone SIM cards were issued by various service providers in the state without foolproof verification and this service was being used by separatist guerrillas to send messages to their cadre.

Following orders from the State Home Department, the service providers in the state have been now adopting a strict verification procedure before issuing prepaid or post-paid SIM cards to subscribers.

JPN/Agencies

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